I am actually writing this post on my cell phone en route to Columbus, Ohio. I just hope that it doesn't leave me without a cell phone on my next trip. Not sure about how the formatting will be but I will fix when I get my computer back (read on).
So what is "The Journey That Mattered"? Well, in 2001 I studied abroad at Oxford University I was studying Psychology and needed to begin finding direction in my future. I had no intention of becoming a psychologist I wanted to do research but what type I did not know. I chose to further look into foreign affairs and ended up graduating with a degree in Psychology and International Studies. I ended up taking an amazing job at SRS and have begun to search out direction. But why would I tell you this en route to Columbus, Ohio?
Well, this trip I hope is the next trip to be "The Journey That Mattered". Yesterday, I had a long talk with a good friend and it was decided that I would go on this trip without my laptop, enjoy time with my husband and would read a good book. I was a bit hesitant to give up the laptop- since I typically am on the laptop working on long car trips. Although, I was not going to battle her since she called my husband and told him that I would be without my laptop, I was to read a book, and I was not to work. He was to keep me away from work during our annual weekend together in Columbus, Ohio- he has done a very good job so far.
We'll talk again on Monday. Let's see how well this will go. =)
When I first started at SRS, I really was not nervous. I was told by a coworker to get these teacher's to use technology I would have to work with these teachers non-stop, that made things a little uneasy. However, I started by upgrading much of our school's infrastructure; new computers for the teachers and students, an all campus wireless network, and programs to help make the teacher's job easier.
So over the past two school years we have done some amazing things. I enjoy calling our teachers "digital pioneers". So now I am entering my 3rd year at St. Raphael's and I am actually more nervous than I have been in the previous two years. We are working together to further benefit the 21st century learner and my goal is to reach the "tipping point", in which the efforts in technology integration will spread like wildfire throughout our school. We are getting close so I guess it is "wait and see."
So what is in store for the teachers this year? Well, each teacher will have a blog in which they will detail their assignments, class information, etc. check out my blogroll for more information. We improved our student to computer ratio 1:2.4.
h yes, I do recognize that this will also be the place in which I give curriculum updates for classes they will be under the "Tag/Category" of "SRS TinT"
Each year teachers at SRS are asked to create a focus for their professional development. My first year, I was observed three times by the principal, as I was getting my feet wet and learning how to be a better teacher. My second year, my focus was educating others. I was presenting to the Parish Finance Council, at our State of the School, and our first Technology Spring Fling, I was according to my mentor, "very busy."
So what is my focus this year? Well, over the summer I have been trying to learn more about my generation (yes, I am a millennial) and how I can effectively work with the other generations. I was talking informally with the principal today and she brought up a good point, I do not know how to not be busy yet I rebel when I am given a schedule. As I reflected on my teenage years, I had a daily schedule that included getting up, going to school, going to practice, riding the bus for an hour home, doing my homework and heading to bed. I called my mum this evening and said, "I did have the supermom of the 90s." So I guess my focus will be how can I use this new found data and direct it towards projects such as marketing.
So as I was writing this blog posting, I was being my true millennial self- multitasking. I was chatting with friends over AOL IM, watching a little TV, and posting links to del.icio.us. I guess it does pose questions for people who do not understand how these millennials work.
As the team of teachers sent by SRS left the 2007 NECC, we talked about how we could next year contribute to the energy of the presentations. There is an interesting dynamic at SRS in regards to the teachers. There is a few of the mature generation, large number of baby boomers, a few gen-xers, and a one millennial teacher. However, we are educating the millennial population (our students) and understanding how the millennial operates will continue to help SRS move forward.
So, this past summer we have been looking in depth to the idea of the generations. Born in 1980 to baby boomer parents, I identify myself to be a millennial. Even though I am part of the earliest wave of this generation. However, I see the defining characteristic of the millennial generation is the need for "communication and connectedness". As I was enjoying an afternoon with my friends from school, we all sat around with our cell phones most of them were the "smart phones" with non-stop access to our email and the internet. Our cars are equipped differently than our parents, they include iPods and GPS with real-time traffic updates. The need for cigarette lighter adapters is at it is greatest.
Today my principal and I prepared our submission to the NCEA 2008 conference in Indianapolis. We talked about a more simple dynamic: digital immigrants and digital natives. As a digital native do I present an interesting dynamic to the workplace, I find technology as the most integral part of student learning. How can I help the digital immigrant become comfortable with technology? How can an administrator prepare their school to hire the digital native? I will be interested to see if our presentation is selected as one of the programs because I truly believe that this dynamic will begin "rearing its head" in the coming years.